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COVID-19 Information

The safety and wellbeing of our community is always our highest priority.

Our approach is guided by the advice of the Department of Education and Training (DET) and also the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) We are confident that we are meeting their recommendations and requirements, and we will  reassess our approach as the situation continues to evolve.

 

Please speak with a member of our teaching team or email info@hpk.org.au should you have any questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is HPK doing to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19?


Many steps to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 at Helen Paul Kindergarten have been implemented. These include (but are not limited to);

  • Temperature checking of all children on arrival, in line with current advice from the Department of Education
  • Indoor and outdoor learning spaces reconfigured to allow for physical distancing
  • Outdoor play encouraged during sessions to allow for greater physical distancing

  • Increased environmental cleaning
  • Explicit teaching of protective measures such as hand hygiene and cough etiquette




When should I keep my child home from HPK?


The best protective measure for HPK is to ensure that children who are unwell do not attend kindergarten sessions. As such, we ask that children who display any of the following symptoms are kept home from kindergarten until symptoms have resolved;

  • Fever (temperature over 37.5°C)

  • Sore throat

  • Runny nose

  • Stomach ache (with or without vomiting and/or diarrhoea)

  • Cough

  • Body sores or rash (with fever)

  • Sore eyes (with pus or thick mucus)

  • No appetite, are tired, pale, cranky, or not feeling well

Additionally, if your child requires the administration of Panadol or Nurofen in the morning prior to kindergarten, we ask that your child be kept at home.

We also ask that families are mindful of the health of other members of the household. If members of your family are unwell, we ask that you consider keeping your child at home even if the child is not feeling unwell. This will assist us in protecting our community from the spread of illness through asymptomatic sources.

Thank you for your support in keeping all members of the HPK community healthy.




Do I need to inform HPK if my child is unwell?


Yes – please inform the kindergarten (via phone on 03 9598 6416) as soon as practicable if your child has an infectious disease or has been in contact with a person who has an infectious disease (in accordance with our Dealing with Infectious Diseases Policy).




When can my child return to kindergarten if they have been unwell?


We ask that children do not return to kindergarten until all symptoms have resolved. Additionally, families must comply with the minimum exclusion periods for infectious diseases (in accordance with our Dealing with Infectious Diseases Policy).




What if my child becomes unwell during a session at HPK?


Given the current circumstances, our teaching team will need to be extra vigilant in monitoring the health of the children (whilst being careful not to cause the children any concern). If our teaching team feel that a child is exhibiting symptoms of any illness they will phone the child's Emergency Contacts to ask that they are collected from HPK as soon as possible.

Please ensure that the following CareMonkey eForms are kept up to date so that our teaching team is able to reach Emergency Contacts and Authorised Nominees for your child quickly and easily if the need arises;

  • 2.1 MANDATORY Authorised Persons (Emergency Contacts)

  • 2.2 Authorised Nominees to collect your child from HPK

You can update your response to a CareMonkey eForm by following these instructions.




Does my child need to have received the influenza vaccine in order to attend HPK?


According to the Department of Health, annual influenza vaccination is recommended for all persons ages 6 months and over (unless contraindicated).

While this is not a requirement of attendance at HPK, we would like to highlight to families that the influenza vaccine is now free for children aged between 6 months and 5 years of age, under the National Immunisation Program.




Will the children be having shared fruit platters at snack time?


No – in order to support hygiene measures we have decided not to have shared fruit platters at snack time. As such, we ask families to send the following food to kindergarten with their child;

3YO Groups (Possums and Kookaburras)

  • Snack

  • Water Bottle

4YO Groups (Emus and Kangaroos)

Onsite - (33 Kingston Street)

  • 1 x lunchbox

  • 2 x snacks

  • Water bottle

Bush Kinder

  • 1 x lunchbox

  • 1 x snack

  • Water bottle

Ideally, snacks are best packed separately to your child’s lunch so that they can be easily identified.

Please note, that HPK team members will not be handling food on your child’s behalf, so please send fruit already cut up, if necessary.

As always, HPK encourages healthy lunchboxes. Further guidance in packing nutritious lunchboxes for your child can be found here.




What changes have been made to the procedure for the delivery of children to HPK?


In the interests of maintaining physical distancing and protecting the health of our HPK community, we have made a number of changes to the drop off procedure. These changes are outlined below;

  • If possible, we ask that families limit the number of people delivering children to HPK to one adult
  • On arrival at HPK, parents and carers are asked to maintain physical distancing (a minimum of 1.5 metres) from other adults, including the teaching team, at all times.
  • We understand that space at the front entry is limited, so please wait on the footpath if there are mulitple families dropping off children at the same time. There should be no more than 10 adults in the entry to HPK at any one time.
  • If possible, prams are to be left on the grassy area (not brought up the ramp) to allow plenty of space
  • An HPK team member will greet families (one at a time) at the front entry door
  • Children will be individually signed in to the care of HPK by an HPK team member, at which time the child’s temperature will be taken
  • Any child with a temperature above 37.5°C will not be permitted to attend HPK
  • Children will say goodbye to family members at the front entrance, and will be accompanied by a staff member to wash their hands (under supervision).




What changes have been made to the procedure for the collection of children from HPK?


In the interests of maintaining physical distancing and protecting the health of our HPK community, we have made a number of changes to the collection procedure. These changes are outlined below;

  • If possible, we ask that families limit the number of people collecting children from HPK to one adult
  • Teachers will be prepared for children to be collected from HPK up to half an hour early should you wish, to reduce the number of families arriving at one time.
  • On arrival at HPK, parents and carers are asked to maintain physical distancing (a minimum of 1.5 metres) from other adults, including the teaching team, at all times.
  • We understand that space at the front entry is limited, so please wait on the footpath if there are mulitple families dropping off children at the same time. There should be no more than 10 adults in the entry to HPK at any one time (including the path and grass surrounds).
  • If possible, prams are to be left on the grassy area (not brought up the ramp) to allow plenty of space
  • Bikes, scooters and helmets must be collected from the front porch and moved to the grassy area prior to collecting your child.
  • An HPK team member will greet families (one at a time) at the front entry door
  • Children will be called by an HPK team member, one at a time, to come to the front door to meet their family.

  • At this point, the children will be signed in to the care of the family by an HPK team member




What about Bush Kinder? (4YO program only)


Our bush kinder program will continue, despite the Stage 3 restrictions in place. Please note, that this decision is in line with current Department of Education and Training (DET) guidelines that permit the operation of Bush Kinder programs. Rest assured that the safety and wellbeing of our children is always our highest priority.

Please note the following;

  • We ask that parents and carers maintain physical distancing at all times.

  • The drop off and collection point will be close to the toilet block by the playground, due to Stage 3 restrictions currently in place.

  • Please provide a waterproof jacket for your child, clearly labelled with their name. Children will continue to wear red waterproof pants (provided by HPK).

  • Please be aware that your child's backpack may be exposed to rain, as we are unable to use the rotunda for shelter. Our teaching team will endeavour to protect belongings as much as possible.

  • Children will need a backpack large enough to fit their belongings, but they must be able to carry it independently.




Will the teaching team wear masks?


At times, our teaching team may wear a mask for the protection of the HPK community. Physical distancing is difficult to achieve in a kindergarten setting, especially with young children. As such, the teaching team will exercise their discretion and may choose to wear masks when they feel that it is necessary. You may wish to discuss this with your children prior to their attendance at kindergarten sessions.




What about sharing food to celebrate birthdays?


We are conscious that many of the children will have missed birthday celebrations with friends and family over the past few months. In light of this, we would like to continue to provide children with the opportunity to celebrate their special day at kindergarten, safely. If you would like to provide birthday treats for your child to share with their classmates you are welcome to (though, of course, this is entirely optional - each family is welcome to make their own decision).

What can I bring to celebrate my child's birthday?

We are unable to distribute home made food to the children at this time. As such, we ask that any food brought to share is packaged. Suggestions of suitable items include Coles/Woolworths individual cupcakes, Freddo Frogs, Chupa Chups etc.

Please keep in mind that any food brought to kinder needs to be nut free, in line with HPK policy.

Alternatively, you might like to consider non-food treats such as bubbles, stickers or stamps.

Our teaching team will, of course, practice hand hygiene when distributing any treats amongst the children.

Please feel free to speak with a member of the teaching team if you would like to discuss this further.





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Contact Us

Helen Paul Kindergarten

33 Kingston Street,

Hampton, VIC, 3188

(03) 9598 6416

info@hpk.org.au

We acknowledge the Boon Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation as the traditional owners of the land on which our kinder is located.  We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

© 2020 Helen Paul Kindergarten. 

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